When we catch up with General Leia in Star Wars: The Last Jedi, she will be grieving the loss of her husband, Han Solo. She will also be scrambling to relocate the Resistance Base, of which the First Order now know the location. She’ll also be grappling to salvage the Republic, which was destroyed by the First Order in The Force Awakens.
None of this is new territory for Leia, however. She’s been fighting this battle since she was 17-years-old, as a young Princess on Alderaan. She’s fought the Empire, she’s fought the First Order and now she has to do it all over again. So how did Leia become the fierce general we know her to be? Who will she call upon to help her rebuild the Republic in The Last Jedi? There are some clues in the prequel book Leia, Princess of Alderaan.
Leia, Princess of Alderaan
Before Leia was a Resistance General, or even a member of the Rebel Alliance, she was the Princess of Alderaan. As the daughter of Bail and Breha Organa, she was heir to the throne of her home planet, Alderaan. Leia’s claim to the throne and subsequent journey into the Resistance is laid out in Claudia Gray‘s book Leia, Princess of Alderaan. In the book, Leia thinks that her parents are ignoring her and throwing lavish parties for their friends in the Republic. What she doesn’t know, but eventually comes to find out, is that her parents are key members of the Resistance.
The Introduction of Amilyn Holdo
If you’re wondering how a book about Leia’s youth connects to a film set 30 years later, meet Amilyn Holdo. Holdo will play a key role in The Last Jedi. Played by actress Laura Dern (Twin Peaks, Big Little Lies), Holdo will take a leadership role in the Resistance alongside General Leia. The pair first met 30 years earlier while Leia was on a climbing expedition with other young men and women in the Republic leadership program. The girls are stranded during the expedition and come together to help rescue some of their classmates.
Holdo’s inclusion in the book means that she has been present in the Star Wars universe since before the original trilogy of films. We don’t know where she’s been exactly, perhaps fighting in the Rebel Alliance on another base? Either way, she will be called in to help run the Resistance during The Last Jedi. Perhaps Leia asks her friend for help after she realizes that Kylo Ren, her son, is too ruthless to defeat, and as a mother, she can’t kill him.
Star Wars: The Last Jedi opens in the UK on December 14 and in the US on December 15, 2018.